• United States

Vendors combine WLAN efforts

Jul 01, 20042 mins

* SMC Networks, IP3 Networks help enable WLAN hot spots

SMC Networks recently teamed with IP3 Networks to bundle their products for those who are building public wireless LAN hot spots.

As WLAN technology becomes more widespread and is embedded in laptop computers, WLAN hot spots are also becoming more prevalent in hospitality venues as a way to quickly give people access to the Internet.

SMC offers its EliteConnect Universal Wireless Access Point, which can accommodate up to 64 wireless users at a time. The device supports IEEE 802.11a, b and g standards. IP3 handles the configuration, authentication and billing.

SMC also mentioned that it offers equipment to provide Internet access to hotel rooms over telephone wires. This might be an attractive option for hotels that don’t want to go through the hassle and expense of rewiring an entire building for Internet access, and can’t do wireless instead. SMC’s Extended Ethernet technology combines customer premises equipment, splitters and switches to deliver up to 15M bit/sec at distances up to 5,000 feet.

Meanwhile, IP3 entered into another joint product offering with Strix Systems, another maker of WLAN equipment, especially for hotels. Strix’s Access/One Network would combine with IP3’s NetAccess gateway for an integrated and tested bundle. Just as with the SMC arrangement, users would have the equipment to set up the network and the management and billing software to run it.

Strix’s approach is to use a proprietary mesh topology with wireless communications between the access points themselves – so users would not have to run Ethernet cable to each access point.